Tampa, FL (October 23, 2013) – November is National Diabetes Awareness Month, and the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA is encouraging residents of Hillsborough and East Pasco counties to learn their risks for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, and to take preventive steps to potentially reduce their chances of developing the disease.
Currently, one in three Americans (79 million people) has prediabetes, a condition in which a person’s blood glucose is elevated, but not high enough for a diabetes diagnosis. Only 11 percent of those with prediabetes know they have it. With awareness and simple actions, people with prediabetes may prevent the onset of diabetes.
Everyone can assess their risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes by taking a simple test at YMCA.net/diabetes. Through this assessment, visitors can also learn how lifestyle choices and family history help determine the ultimate risk for developing the disease. Several factors that could put a person at risk for type 2 diabetes include: race, age, weight and activity level. If a person is at risk, a diabetes screening conducted by a physician can confirm a diabetes or prediabetes diagnosis.
“As a leading voice on improving the nation’s health and well-being, the Y wants residents of the Greater Tampa Bay area to understand their risk of developing chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes,” said Vice-President of Wellness Programs Pete Cosentino. “Often times, understanding a person is at risk is the first step to making the necessary changes needed to live better, healthier lives.”
The Tampa YMCA is helping to improve health and well-being through its Y Diabetes Prevention Program. Originally created by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the Y Diabetes Prevention Program is a one-year diabetes prevention program developed to reduce the risk of diabetes in those with pre-diabetes. The first 16 weekly sessions cover nutrition, physical activity, and behavior modification to help participants achieve two primary goals: reduce body weight by 7-percent and participate in regular physical activity. Upon completion of the 16 weeks, participants move into a maintenance program for the remaining eight months. Some basic lifestyle changes covered in the Y Diabetes Prevention Program include:
· Eating fruits and vegetables every day.
· Choosing fish, lean meats and poultry without skin.
· Aiming for whole grains with every meal.
· Being moderately active at least 30 minutes per day five days a week.
· Choosing water to drink instead of beverages with added sugar.
· Speaking to your doctor about your diabetes risk factors, especially if you have a family history or are overweight.
About the Tampa Y
The Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA is one of the area’s leading nonprofits, strengthening Hillsborough and East Pasco communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the Association, 19 facilities engage more than 160,000 men, women and children — regardless of age, income or background — to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve our community’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. The Tampa Y has long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. www.tampaymca.org